4 Tips to Help You Learn How to Secure Cloud Data
Nowadays, companies across the globe are relying on cloud-based platforms to perform a range of critical workflows. They store their CRM information on the cloud. They manage their payrolls through the cloud. They also manage HR processes using the cloud. This means that they’re entrusting the majority of their business information to these cloud service providers, too.
And while most major cloud providers do a decent job of keeping data secure, the majority of business users take an upload-it-and-forget-it approach to their data security needs. That, it’s safe to add — is risky.
Cloud service providers can only safeguard a company’s data when the business is adhering to certain cloud security best practices. It’s good to know that they’re not too difficult to follow. Here are four of the most crucial cloud security tips that companies need to incorporate into their cloud services immediately.
Never Skip Selection Due Diligence
The initial Cloud security practice that businesses need to adhere to is to do your due diligence when selecting cloud providers to use. It’s essential to check out the reputation of each cloud provider. However, it’s equally important to review their security practices as well as the details of their user agreements.
As a minimum organizations must find out which data is stored by the service provider along with information on how the vendor can prevent unauthorized users from accessing.
They should also be sure to check whether the vendor provides guarantees or technical support in the case of a data breach. If any of the information is not clear or satisfactory then it’s recommended to choose an alternative provider that is more reliable.
Create a Bulletproof Access Management Strategy
The next cloud security best practice is to devise and implement a unified access management strategy. One of the big security issues that cloud-dependent businesses face is that they rely on fragmented authentication and access management systems. And that often leads to poor credential management and permissions creep.
To put a stop to those issues, it’s advisable to unify their authentication and access management through a single sign-on (SSO) provider. And at a minimum, all accounts — regardless of platform — should require multifactor authentication and undergo frequent access rights reviews. And lastly, it’s important to take steps to prevent identity theft. This problem is on the risel, so be sure to take proactive steps in that regard, before anything bad even happens.
Improve User Education and Implement Malware Security
In the end, the final accountability for data security lies on those who have access to the data. Without proper education and training, the majority of users are only an unintentionally opened email one click away from enabling an attack on data. This is why it’s a best practice for cloud security to ensure adequate training for all users prior to granting access to any important information or business systems.
As a third security measure is to use the malware and threat prevention solution designed specifically for cloud-hosted deployments. They provide security through uploaded data scans and proactive threat defense, which prevents unauthorized users from accessing cloud-hosted data. While they’re not a substitute for a trained and well-aware user base, they do make great insurance policies against accidental human error.
Practice Data Minimization
The last thing to mention is that it’s best for businesses to take measures to reduce the amount of information they’re giving to cloud service providers. In the end, it’s not necessary to safeguard information that wasn’t stored in the first place. The goal is to fine-tune business processes so that they only collect the necessary information for their operation.
For instance, running a pipeline of deals on the cloud requires the storage of certain personal identifiable client information. However, it doesn’t need any tangible financial data or any other details to be successful. Therefore, it’s important to define that in a way and ensure that everyone doesn’t include any unnecessary information.
This is a significant step towards creating a plan of data minimization which decreases the company’s risk of being vulnerable in the cloud. Also depending on the type of data that is involved there could be a legal requirement that businesses have to adhere to. Whatever the case cutting down on the amount of amount of data stored across different cloud platforms can simplify everything related to data security, from managing, to access control, and curation. It is a must and must be the primary focus of what businesses do online.
The Bottom Line
The bottom line is that cloud-based platforms and applications have become a crucial part in the daily operations of businesses regardless of size. And they’re not going away. With the cyber-security landscape growing more complex every day, it’s up on businesses to utilize these tools in ways to reduce the risk and eliminate any risks in regards to security of data. Failure to adhere to this has cost many businesses — and is likely to continue to do this. However, if you take data security seriously, starting by following the best four practices outlined in the previous paragraphs, businesses of today are able to avoid this fate.